On the 31st we will say goodbye to the 7 year ENP and on the 1st of January 2014 we will say hello to the new ENP. It has been a bumby 7 years of watching the ENP and its author Javier Solana. Many gave up on the theory and many just burried it with the hope of something happening in the future. I will clasify myself under the second group, and I think it is time to watch it more closely as the ENP Part II kicks of for 7 years.
As n refresher on what the ENP is all about, please read this EU document: A SECURE EUROPE IN A BETTER WORLD
The ENP is all about peace and security with the Middle East and Israel at the center of it all. Here is some info taken from my friend David Wilkerson’s blog:
“The ENP is a prime example of the European Union’s comprehensive approach to foreign policy – using all instruments in a coherent way under the umbrella of the ENP – from Common Foreign and Security Policy, to political cooperation, trade policy, and also sector policies such as transport and energy.”
“Negotiations for the 2014-2020 European Neighbourhood Instrument regulation are nearing conclusion, and here I want to underline the importance of ensuring sufficient flexibility in the implementation of our financial instrument in the future so that we can react to unpredictable developments in the region. It is also important that both the European Parliament and the Member States finalise negotiations swiftly so that there is no interruption in our financial assistance to partners in 2014.”
“I am also pleased that funding for the ENP was confirmed at the current levels for the next European Union Multiannual Financial Framework, despite the overall decrease of the European Union budget.”“At the regional level, the Arab-Israeli conflict remains unsolved and also prevents full regional cooperation in the South Mediterranean. We hope that following last Friday’s announcement of a return to direct peace talks, we may finally see progress in negotiations between Israel and Palestine.”
Well, I was really starting to suspect that Dr. Solana had decided that he was through with global politics, except in a professorial role. My “google alerts” brought this to my attention within the past 15 minutes of writing this to my readers. It appears to me from this and reading of his current roles in European Security organizations that he may have been carefully biding his time. He is suddenly making strong calls for “global governance” with a rearmed Europe being in a predominant role in his hoped for structures.Now, I don’t know what his motives are. It appears from my current perspective that Catherine Ashton may have been underestimated by those who may have perceived her job as a sinecure. Catherine Ashton has been given much credit for helping to achieve at least an interim international agreement with Iran over its nuclear development. That was a goal that had been elusive to Dr. Solana during his tenure which started with his representation of virtually the rest of the world to Iran which was announced by President George W. Bush on the rather auspicious date of June 6, 2006.Catherine Ashton, it has been reported, has gone from “zero to hero.” When she entered her job, it was not expected by her critics that she would long survive in the position. She retorted to them, “I’m a stayer, not a quitter.” This past April Javier Solana was recently on a panel with the Brookings Institution relative to the Iranian nuclear crisis. He had lots of explanations as to why it fell through and expressed pessimism as to the efficacy of future negotiations with the Iranian foreign minister Jalili. Apparently Catherine Ashton had her successes with him and his successor. Many many former Solana aides (e.g. Robert Cooper) and applauders (e.g. the London Financial Times) have decided that now it appears that Catherine Ashton deserves the credit she was formerly and long denied.I suspected that the “High Representative” position with the very high salary and combined military and foreign policy powers had been created for the benefit of Javier Solana who was expected to be the super-powerful European Union Foreign Minister prior to the referendum failures. Only after Solana announced he would retire and not seek the post did Ireland finally reluctant approve the Treaty. That was in 2009. Now 2014 is nigh and that will be the last year of Catherine Ashton’s 5 year term. Does Javier Solana perhaps still want the job that had initially been created for him? Others who have aspired to jobs Mr. Solana wanted eventually went down to relative political obscurity. Witness Tony Blair and Joschka Fischer.How will all of this sort out? I don’t know, but watching it is sure fascinating.Stay tuned!CONSTANCE